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Chicago sets new record--no murders in 7 days? What happened?

The city of Chicago went six days without a homicide, something that hasn't happened here since the end of 2012.

About noon Saturday, a man was found lying facedown in the 5400 block of West Ohio Street in South Austin. The medical examiner's office on Sunday identified him as Antoine Watkins, 22, and determined his death was a homicide, caused by multiple gunshot wounds.

His death came six days after that of James Morris, 23, of the 3100 block of West 15th Place, who was killed about 11 a.m. Feb. 26 while sitting in a vehicle in the 1300 block of South Kedzie Avenue.

It marked the longest stretch without a homicide in the city since at least Dec. 3-9, 2012, according to a Tribune analysis of city homicide data.

There have been fewer homicides so far this year than there were in 2016 but more shootings overall. There were 109 homicides through March 5 in 2016; there have been 103 so far this year. There were 520 shootings through this date in 2016, and there have been 539 shootings so far this year, according to data kept by the Tribune.

The last time Chicago saw a day without a person shot was Feb. 28, 2015, according to data compiled by the Tribune.

Anthony Guglielmi, a spokesman for the Chicago Police Department, said it really begins with the community.

"Residents and business owners drive the safety of neighborhoods, and we are there to support them," he said. "The credit goes to our community partners."

Guglielmi said there isn't one individual reason behind the six days without a homicide, but that the department is seeing promising results in its 7th and 11th districts, where it has been investing a lot in terms of manpower and predictive analytics technology that determines where to send officers and gunshot detection systems.

"We still have a lot of work to do, but the predictive analytics is one of many ingredients. The largest one is the investment of officers with the partnership of communities," Guglielmi said.

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